May 31, 2024 at 10:23 am

A Bartender Assumed A Disabled Woman Had Too Much To Drink, So She Set Him Straight. – ‘I have never felt so insecure and misunderstood.’

by Ashley Ashbee

Source: TikTok/@kiersten.riggs

We all want to feel free to go out and enjoy ourselves without any drama or shame.

Unfortunately for TikToker @kiersten.riggs, an incident took the fun out of her evening.

The bartender mistakenly assumed she was drunk and wouldn’t serve her.

Source: TikTok/@kiersten.riggs

“I have never felt so insecure and misunderstood about my health condition,” she said in a video she made to raise awareness about this issue.

Kiersten has Friedreich’s ataxia, an illness that affects her coordination.

Source: TikTok/@kiersten.riggs

She was especially uncoordinated when she and her friends stopped at a bar because they had been walking a lot and she needed a rest.

Kiersten was “completely sober” and asked for a drink.

The bartender replied, “I’m not going to serve you. I just watched you stumble to the bathroom.” She animates her hands while quoting the bartender.

“Your boyfriend was holding your hand. It’s just odd behavior.”

Source: TikTok/@kiersten.riggs

You’d think an explanation would have changed his mind, but “When I told him I have a neuromuscular disorder, he starts shaking his head, ‘No’.”

She also offered to show him her diagnosis from her doctor on her phone, but he rejected that, too.

The problem is pervasive. “There are people who are really scared to go out in public because they don’t want things to happen like that.”

She ends the video by advocating for disclosure because “it’s going to bring awareness,” which can promote dignity and respect.

Watch the full clip here.


#friedreichsataxia #raredisease #disabilityawareness

♬ original sound – Kiersten Riggs

Let’s check out the comments.

I enjoyed seeing so much solidarity in the comments and people also exchanging advice.

Source: TikTok/@kiersten.riggs

A lot of people shared similar horror stories. I also have a condition that affects my coordination and I’ve been concerned this could happen to me.

Source: TikTok/@kiersten.riggs
Cool! Some of her friends left supportive comments.

Source: TikTok/@kiersten.riggs
It’s hard for loved ones, too. I hope this post helped them.

Source: TikTok/@kiersten.riggs

I loved to see people thanking Kiersten for educating them.

Source: TikTok/@kiersten.riggs

It’s not hard to imagine that other things besides alcohol affect your coordination.

If you liked that story, check out this one about a couple who forgot to turn off their ice machine and returned home after 4 months to find their freezer had turn into a frozen cavern.